Some fluorescents given 2-year reprieve

The Dept. of Energy has post-poned the "phase-out" date to July 14, 2014, for three T-8 general-service fluorescent lamps (GSFLs) after exception requests were filed by three companies.


Responding to three individually filed exception requests, the U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) has postponed by two years – to July 14, 2014 – the “phase-out” date for 700-series T-8 general-service fluorescent lamps (GSFLs) manufactured by GE Lighting (GE); OSRAM SYLVANIA, Inc. (OSI); and Philips Lighting Company (Philips). Only companies that have been excepted by DOE may continue to manufacture or import the T-8 GSFLs in question beyond July 14, 2012. The lamps involved are the 4-foot medium bi-pin, 2-foot U-shaped, 8-foot Slimline, and 8-foot high-output 700-series T-8s. 

DOE’s Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) granted the extensions to GE, OSI, and Philips, all three of which are National Lighting Bureau sponsors. The basis for the exceptions was the growing scarcity and escalating cost of the rare-earth oxides used to manufacture the phosphors intrinsic to the proper functioning of fluorescent lamps. The severe supply/cost difficulties have been caused by manufacturing and export regulations subsequently instituted by China. According to the DOE OHA ruling, “China now controls approximately 97% of the world-wide supply of rare earth elements and rare earth oxides, and has adopted policies that have drastically reduced the volumes of rare earth elements and oxides that can be exported to U.S. lighting manufacturers.” 

The impact of China’s rare-earth market manipulations is underscored by a National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) report that world prices for terbium increased at an annual rate of more than 400% in 2011; for europium oxides, the 2011 escalation rate exceeded 500%. 

According to National Lighting Bureau Chair Howard P. Lewis (Lighting Alternatives, Inc.), the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America’s (IES’) representative on the Bureau board of directors, had the 700-series T-8 phase-out been allowed to take effect on July 14, 2012, 800-series T-8s would have been among the most logical alternatives. The cost of 800-series T-8s exceeds that of 700-series T-8s because the rare-earth content of 800-series T-8s significantly exceeds that of 700-series T-8s. Mr. Lewis observed that, “This ruling enhances affordability at a time when it’s needed. We applaud DOE for its good judgment, and GE, OSI, and Philips for seeking the exceptions.” 

No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Choosing controllers: PLCs, PACs, IPCs, DCS? What's best for your application?; Wireless trends; Design, integration; Manufacturing Day; Product Exclusive
Variable speed drives: Smooth, efficient, electrically quite motion control; Process control upgrades; Mobile intelligence; Product finalists: Vote now; Product Exclusives
Machine design tips: Pneumatic or electric; Software upgrades; Ethernet advantages; Additive manufacturing; Engineering Leaders; Product exclusives: PLC, HMI, IO
This article collection contains the 5 most referenced articles on improving the use of PID.
Learn how Industry 4.0 adds supply chain efficiency, optimizes pricing, improves quality, and more.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again
Pipeline vulnerabilities? Securing hydrocarbon transit; Predictive analytics hit the mainstream; Dirty pipelines decrease flow, production—pig your line; Ensuring pipeline physical and cyber security